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The St Edmundsbury Sailing & Canoeing Association's 2019 season preview

by Mike Steele 12 Mar 16:11 GMT
SESCA Young People Afloat © Mike Steele

Preparations are in hand for the St Edmundsbury Sailing & Canoeing Association's 2019 season, which commences on Sunday, 31 March. SESCA is based at Lackford Lake, five miles NW of Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk.

This year's programme is busier than ever with on the water activities scheduled on nearly every day throughout the summer. Club dinghy racing is being held on Sunday mornings and Thursday evenings, while social sailing and training mainly takes place on Saturdays and Sunday afternoons. (The most popular classes are Lasers, Toppers, Enterprises, Wanderers, Picos and Gulls). It is a great feature of the Club that it has its own fleet of dinghies and kayaks, so that you don't need your own boat to be able to sail or paddle.

There are a number of juniors moving up from Toppers into the Laser class this year, so the competition should be very good. There are also signs of a burgeoning Optimist fleet, which is welcome.

The highlights of the season will be the Club's '7th Antigua Sailing Day Regatta', which is being held on Sunday, 2 June and the RYA 'Push the Boat Out' Open Day, which is being held on Sunday, 5 May. The Regatta celebrates 'Antigua Sailing Week' and is being generously supported, once again, by the Antigua & Barbuda Tourism Authority. There will be a special prize for the Sea Cadets, who we are hoping will be well represented. The Open Weekend is another fun occasion and a great opportunity for members of the public to visit the Club and try sailing or kayaking for free.

SESCA is an RYA recognised Training Centre, so will again be running a number of Learn to Sail courses and a new series of monthly Sailing Support Sessions for members looking to improve their skills.

The Club's disabled sailing group, WASH Sailability, which is going from strength to strength, will be sailing on Thursday mornings, in addition to their usual Tuesday and Saturday morning slots, to meet the increase in demand for places. Meanwhile, the Club's junior sailing group, Young People Afloat, which will be sailing on Wednesdays and some Monday evenings, continues to be heavily oversubscribed and has a substantial waiting list.

The Club's three Sea Cadet Units - Bury St Edmunds, Mildenhall and Newmarket are also thriving and will each be running several sailing and gig rowing sessions per week. The Cadets are looking forward to getting out in their new RS Quest and Zest dinghies and doing some more racing.

The Suffolk Scouts, who run nearly all their watersports activities at Lackford, have also significantly expanded their programme this year and will be running multiple sessions for Cubs, Scouts and Guides from across the County. Finally but not least, Priory School will be continuing their paddling outings on Monday and Tuesday evenings.

Anyone interested in dinghy sailing (pottering or racing), canoeing, kayaking or windsurfing is most welcome to visit the Club to see what is on offer. The Club prides itself on its low membership fees and being affordable to all. (Student - under 25 in full time education - £25 pa; adult £62 pa and family £90 pa). New members welcome.

For further information, please see: www.westsuffolksailing.org.uk or email:

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